Friday, September 16, 2011

Handley 20 Clay County 13

By: Wesley Kinsey

Prime time!.... Radio and TV were there. The hills were covered with fans from both sides. Even the Executive Director of the AHSAA, Steve Savarese, was on hand as two titans in 3A squared off in a Region 3 showdown. The fourth ranked Panthers from Clay County took on the third ranked Tigers of Handley.....Prime time!

The game lived up to the hype. After returning the opening kickoff, the Tigers looked poised to go up quick but the Panthers intercepted a pass at their own 5. After Handley forced a Clay County punt, the Tigers set up at the Panther 29.

Six plays later Chris Dillard powered in from the 2 for Handley's first TD of the night. Connor Boyd added the point after kick as HHS went up 7-0 with 6:39 to go in the first quarter. The score remained that way until CCHS capped off a drive with a Shawncey Simmons pass to Jamari Staples for the score at 10:04 left in the first half.

Breyon Deberry dashed to the end zone on an 11 yard run with 7:30 remaining and Boyd's PAT made it 14-6 with 7:33 remaining. Handley again drove deep into Panther territory but a 41 yard field goal attempt was no good and the half ended 14-6.

Handley again moved deep into Clay County territory midway in the third but turned the ball over at the 15. Then in the final stanza, fullback Dejuan Clark bolted 80 yards for a Handley touchdown with 8:40 to go in the game. The PAT failed but Handley took a 20-6 advantage.

The Panthers never quit and scored again on a Simmons to Staples pass with 2:47 to go in the game. Simmons added the extra point to draw the Panthers within seven at 20-13. The ensuing onside kick failed to go the required 10 yards and the Tigers went into the victory formation to end the game.

Handley extends it's home win streak to 28 and goes to 4-0 on the season, 3-0 in region three. Coach Mike Battles secured win # 62 with the victory. Clay County goes to 3-1, and 2-1 respectively.But don't be surprised to see these titans clash again in the playoffs. And if they do, once again it will be prime time.....


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